"IF Uncut" Video: Sam Van Aken's Hole in the Sky

"I'm very invested in confusion. It's where new ideas emerge." Sam Van Aken, IdeaFestival 2014

Artist Sam Van Aken talks about his creative process in the latest IdeaFestival Uncut video.

As you might guess from the quote above, his approach to art making follows a highly disruptive process. That work method is reflected in two current projects: A Hole in the Sky where he attempts to alter the actual weather by using a plane to punch holes in clouds and produce the phenomena known as Jacob's Ladder, and The Tree of 40 Fruit, which is a single tree that can grow over 40 different varieties of stone fruit.

Van Aken uses a method of cloning desirable fruits using a process called grafting in the Tree of 40 Fruit.

In a personal moment nearer the end of the video, Van Aken describes his artistic transformation, going from producing work earlier in his career that was irreverent to work, now, that incorporates elements of the transcendent. He described the Tree of 40 Fruit as a bit of "hocus pocus," a term the he pointed out is related to hoc est (enim) corpus (meum) in the Latin mass. The comparison is particularly apt since many of the fruits that he has grafted are long forgotten varieties that are given new life through Van Aken's work.

The tree's spring display, if you haven't seen it, is simply stunning.

The IdeaFestival Uncut video series brings you speaker presentations in their entirety, and can be found on IFTV. Please subscribe! And don't forget to follow the festival on Twitter or like us on Facebook.

Stay curious!